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The Return of the Inquisitors in Ahsoka

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The Imperial Inquisitors were believed to have perished, yet a revelation in Ahsoka’s depiction unveils the resurgence of these sinister figures, now without the presence of Darth Vader.

As fresh details and promotional materials continue to emerge for the highly anticipated Disney+ series “Ahsoka,” numerous intriguing questions arise regarding the show’s narrative trajectory. Among the enigmatic releases is a photograph unveiling a new Inquisitor character, donning the distinctive red lightsaber amidst a forest backdrop. The identity of this enforcer remains shrouded in mystery, leaving fans uncertain if the Inquisitor has been previously featured within the Star Wars canon. Nonetheless, this cryptic figure adds to the array of dark adversaries that Ahsoka Tano will confront.

The Imperial Inquisitors constituted a specialized faction of Force-sensitive individuals meticulously trained to pursue and eliminate Jedi. Remarkably, many of them were former Jedi themselves. Under the tutelage of Darth Vader, these Inquisitors served the dark side, executing the bidding of their masters. Despite their affiliation with the dark side, they were not Sith. Throughout the reign of the Empire, these relentless hunters achieved considerable success, significantly reducing the number of survivors from Order 66. Until now, Inquisitors have exclusively appeared in projects set prior to the original Star Wars trilogy. However, with the advent of “Ahsoka,” it appears that this precedent is about to change.

The Return of the Inquisitors: Mysteries Unveiled in ‘Ahsoka’

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Earlier this month, a photograph featuring an Inquisitor character was unveiled in a release from Empire for the upcoming series “Ahsoka,” triggering a wave of inquiries. In “Return of the Jedi,” it appeared that the Inquisitors had been vanquished prior to the Empire’s downfall, as the Inquisitorius program concluded before the Battle of Yavin. While it is acknowledged, thanks to shows like “The Mandalorian,” that remnants of the Empire exist and hide in the Outer Rim, the mention of Inquisitors as part of the Imperial Shadow Council has been notably absent. If multiple Inquisitors did exist, it would seem like a missed opportunity for the Shadow Council to overlook their unique skill sets.

The unexpected appearance of this Inquisitor in “Ahsoka” is particularly striking because it was assumed that they had been defeated by Kanan Jarrus, Ahsoka Tano, Ezra Bridger, and Darth Maul on the Sith planet of Malachor in Season 2 of “Star Wars Rebels.” After the demise of the Grand Inquisitor in Season 1, the Empire persisted in sending Inquisitors after Ezra and Kanan. Consequently, when no further Inquisitors materialized in Seasons 3 and 4 of “Rebels,” it was presumed that they had all met their demise. It is understood that when an Inquisitor perishes, they are not replaced, implying that their deaths on Malachor signaled the end of the Inquisitorius.

Where Was This Inquisitor During The Star Wars Original Trilogy?

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With the assumption that all Inquisitors had met their demise before the events of the original Star Wars trilogy, a burning question arises regarding the whereabouts of the Inquisitor featured in “Ahsoka” during the final years of the Empire’s dominion over the galaxy. A plausible explanation emerges: this particular Inquisitor was not assigned to any characters seen in the original trilogy. Inquisitors held the responsibility of investigating potential Force-sensitive individuals throughout the galaxy, not solely tasked with eliminating Jedi. Their duties often encompassed tracking down survivors of Order 66, but another crucial aspect involved identifying and capturing Force-sensitive children to be delivered to the Emperor.

In the case of the Inquisitor encountered in “Ahsoka,” it is conceivable that they were deployed on a mission far removed from the narrative of the original trilogy, potentially venturing into the enigmatic Unknown Regions. Following the disappearance of Grand Admiral Thrawn and Ezra Bridger in the finale of “Rebels,” it would be a worthy endeavor for Vader and Palpatine to dispatch an Inquisitor in pursuit of these valuable assets. If Ahsoka crosses paths with this Inquisitor in the Unknown Regions, it is conceivable that the dark-sider has already located Thrawn, potentially even pledging loyalty to the Grand Admiral in the aftermath of the Empire’s collapse.

A Strategic Shift during the Original Trilogy

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Throughout the events of the original trilogy, the personal mission of tracking down Luke Skywalker and turning him to the dark side was exclusively reserved for Darth Vader himself. The true significance of Luke, concealed even from those within Vader’s inner circle, ensured that the assignment of an Inquisitor to hunt down the young rebel would never occur. The remnants of the Grand Inquisitor were swiftly consumed by the flames of defeat shortly after the events depicted in “The Empire Strikes Back,” implying that the newfound Inquisitor would undoubtedly prove futile against the formidable Son of Skywalker.

However, in the era of the New Republic, it is conceivable that the Inquisitor was well aware of their inferiority in direct confrontation with Luke. Consequently, their mission might have shifted towards locating and eliminating potential Jedi students who could emerge in the future. Luke’s swift response to Grogu’s call for aid in Season 2 of “The Mandalorian” suggests that the absence of other students within his budding temple could indicate the ruthless eradication of potential candidates by malicious forces. The survival of the foundling became a matter of utmost importance. Ahsoka’s assertion that Luke’s temple on Ossus is one of the safest havens in the galaxy likely holds true for many years to come. Whether due to Luke’s formidable prowess in the Force or the Imperial Remnant’s apprehension of exposure to the New Republic, dispatching an Inquisitor to confront the Jedi would undoubtedly trigger severe repercussions.

The Inquisitor’s Unforeseen Path in Ahsoka’s Story

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In the aftermath of Ahsoka’s fateful duel with Vader on Malachor, her fate remained ambiguous to the Sith Lord. It would be reasonable to assume that dispatching an Inquisitor to locate her would align with logical intentions. However, it is also plausible that these Inquisitors were reassigned following the Empire’s collapse. The diminished motivation of the Imperial Remnants to hunt down Jedi, coupled with the Shadow Council’s focus on political maneuvering, suggests a shift in priorities. Thus, this particular Inquisitor may be entrusted with an entirely different mission, unexpectedly crossing paths with Ahsoka Tano and her allies along the way. If this Inquisitor has already pledged allegiance to Thrawn, Ahsoka and the enigmatic warrior could find themselves in pursuit of the same individual—most likely Ezra Bridger.

The introduction of this new Inquisitor into Ahsoka’s narrative and the broader Star Wars canon opens up several intriguing possibilities, adding new layers to the continuity. Some have theorized that the Inquisitor could potentially be Ezra Bridger himself, who had a brush with the dark side during Season 3 of “Rebels.” While such a twist remains within the realm of possibility, it appears that Ezra has transcended such a fate by sacrificing himself to save his homeworld. The Inquisitor’s presence in “Ahsoka” carries significant implications for the state of the Imperial Remnant, although they may not survive to witness the continuation of Thrawn’s intricate schemes.

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